(Photo by Jeff Borts of Denash Photography)
Kasey Mackenzie’s debut novel, Red Hot Fury, will be released next week (29th June 2010). You can learn about the book at the end of this post. But first up is a guest blog post Kasey has written about combining the things she loves into one novel. Enjoy!
My debut urban fantasy, Red Hot Fury, came about thanks to my fascination with two things in particular: forensics and mythology. I’d been playing with combining the two for years as I sharpened the items in my writer’s toolbox (to use Stephen King’s term). What’s not to love about magic and mythological creatures? They’re just plain fun, and one of the best things about writing is that you can take the elements you love from existing mythologies, add your own twists, and let them loose in a playground of your own making.
Which is just what I did when creating my main character, Marissa Holloway, Fury and Chief Magical Investigator for my alternate world’s Boston. I took some of the existing Greek mythology for Furies (their supernatural rage and need to bring criminals to justice, their being winged females often depicted with bird-like talons, and their ties to the gods who use them as tools of vengeance) and added some of my own ideas (shape shifting abilities to make infiltrating and investigating other arcane races easier, snake companions as tattoos who shift into magic-boosting familiars rather than snakes for hair, and their starting out as mortal so they serve as a bridge between mortals and arcanes).
As for blending two of the things I love most, I’m a huge crime victim advocate and I’ve always enjoyed seeing how the police use forensics and good, old-fashioned detective work to bring criminals to justice. Over the years I’ve watched so many crime and forensics documentaries, news programs, and fictional TV shows (like CSI, Criminal Minds, Law and Order, etc.) that it would probably be more shocking if I didn’t include some sort of crime or investigation in my fiction. They say write what you know – though it’s true I’m no official expert on the subject – so perhaps it’s more accurate to say that, for me, I write what I love.
No, no, no, I’m not saying that I love the crimes or the criminals. The part I love is seeing real-life and fictional heroes using their wits, skills, and science (or magic!) to bring down villains who think they’re way too smart to get caught. Thankfully, most of them wind up being wrong. Even the smart ones eventually make some sort of mistake that gets them caught, or the police are just too dedicated to give up. That’s what I love most about watching forensics shows and reading urban fantasy.
Plus really, what’s not to love about strong women kicking butt and finding romance (or even just plain ole lust) in the midst of danger? Nothing!
Red Hot Fury (Shades of Fury, Book 1)
Penguin Ace (US & CA: 29th June 2010)
Buy (US) Buy (CA) Buy (Worldwide)
As a Fury, Marissa Holloway belongs to an Arcane race that has avenged wrongdoing since time immemorial. As Boston’s chief magical investigator for the past five years, she’s doing what she was born to do: solve supernatural crimes. But Riss’s investigation into a dead sister Fury leads to her being inexplicably suspended from her job. And to uncover the truth behind this cover-up, she’ll have to turn to her shape-shifting Warhound ex for help.